EditorsNote: removes word “deep” in second graf
South Carolina had two weeks to get over a disappointing performance against Georgia, and took it out on Vanderbilt in a 37-14 whipping of the Commodores at Vanderbilt Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Carolina quarterback Jake Bentley was 19 of 28 for 261 yards, and running back Rico Dowdle ran 20 times for 112 yards. The Gamecocks (2-1, 1-1 SEC) rolled up 534 yards of offense to 284 for Vanderbilt (2-2, 0-1), but turned the ball over three times, all in Vandy territory.
The Gamecocks’ Mon Denson put the game out of reach with a 1-yard touchdown run with 4:06 left in the third quarter, giving the Gamecocks a 30-14 lead. Minutes later, the game was delayed for 39 minutes due to lightning in the area, but Vandy was unable to generate much of a threat from there.
Carolina marched 61 yards on its first second-half drive, with kicker Parker White hitting a 36-yard field goal to put the Gamecocks up 23-14.
Two possessions later, Vanderbilt quarterback Kyle Shurmur lost a fumble on defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw’s sack, which defensive end Aaron Sterling returned to the Vandy 6. That set up Denson’s 1-yard touchdown.
South Carolina opened the game by marching down the field, getting four first downs on three plays and a VU penalty and scoring 55 seconds into the contest on a 38-yard pass from Bentley to wide receiver Shi Smith.
After a Vandy punt, White drilled a 33-yard field goal, and South Carolina’s Rashad Fenton followed by intercepting Shurmur on a deep ball.
Vandy finally got something going when defensive lineman Dare Odeyingbo batted a Bentley pass into the air, picking it off at the Carolina 30 and returning it 7 yards. Six plays later, Vanderbilt running back Ke’Shawn Vaughn scored on a 2-yard run.
But Carolina answered quickly on its next drive, when Smith got behind defensive back Alim Muhammad and hauled in a 52-yard catch to the VU 2. Dowdle easily found the end zone over center on the next snap.
Vandy then sustained its first drive and went 75 yards in 11 plays, with Shurmur hitting wide receiver Kalija Lipscomb with a 2-yard touchdown pass.
Carolina’s White kicked a 35-yard field goal on the half’s last play.
South Carolina’s home game last week against Marshall was canceled due to Hurricane Florence.
—Field Level Media